IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Do Index Funds Monitor?


  • Davidson Heath

    (University of Utah David Eccles School of Business)

  • Daniele Macciocchi

    (University of Utah - David Eccles School of Business)

  • Roni Michaely

    (University of Geneva - Geneva Finance Research Institute (GFRI); Swiss Finance Institute)

  • Matthew Ringgenberg

    (University of Utah - Department of Finance)


We examine whether the rise of index investing leads to increased agency conflicts. Using a new research design that generates exogenous variation in fund holdings, we find that index funds are weak monitors. Unlike active funds, index funds rarely vote against firm management on corporate governance issues. Moreover, although index funds do exit 16% of their holdings each year, they do not use exit to enforce good governance. They also rarely file a Schedule 13D, indicating they do not intend to affect firm policies. Our results show the rise of index investing is shifting control from investors to corporate managers.

Suggested Citation

  • Davidson Heath & Daniele Macciocchi & Roni Michaely & Matthew Ringgenberg, 2019. "Do Index Funds Monitor?," Swiss Finance Institute Research Paper Series 19-08, Swiss Finance Institute.
  • Handle: RePEc:chf:rpseri:rp1908

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: no

    More about this item


    governance; index investing; monitoring; passive investing; voting; exit;

    JEL classification:

    • G12 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Asset Pricing; Trading Volume; Bond Interest Rates
    • G14 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Information and Market Efficiency; Event Studies; Insider Trading

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:


    Access and download statistics


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:chf:rpseri:rp1908. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Ridima Mittal). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    We have no references for this item. You can help adding them by using this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.